The Constitution in Exile

Here is what I think a fascinating article. It is long, but so worth it. It is about “The Constitution in Exile” movement.
For one thing, it’s fascinating to hear the author describe standard Lockean arguments upon which our republic was founded. He writes with a tone which indicates that he thinks these are crazy new ideas:
“As Epstein sees it, all individuals have certain inherent rights and liberties, including ”economic” liberties, like the right to property and, more crucially, the right to part with it only voluntarily. These rights are violated any time an individual is deprived of his property without compensation — when it is stolen, for example, but also when it is subjected to governmental regulation that reduces its value or when a government fails to provide greater security in exchange for the property it seizes.”
Or try this one:
“[Epstein] insists that if the government wants to reduce the value of an individual’s property — with zoning restrictions, for example — it has to compensate him for the lost value.”
I also like the movement’s occasional skepticism of states-rights, which I have shared for a long time:
“One of Greve’s goals at the American Enterprise Institute is to convince more mainstream conservatives that traditional federalism — which is skeptical of federal, but not state, power — is only half right. In his view, states can threaten economic liberty just as significantly as the federal government.”
Finally, the article talks about a few Supreme Court Nominee possibilities that would be awesome. For example, Judge Janice Rogers Brown, who has referred disparagingly to ”the dichotomy that eventually develops where economic liberty — property — is put on a different level than political liberties.”
Amen!
Thanks to Alex Tabarrok for the pointer.

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